Arkansas vs No. 6 Florida

Arkansas vs No. 6 Florida Preview | 2020 NCAAF Expert Analysis

Written by on November 12, 2020

Four games in the SEC have been postponed on Saturday due to the coronavirus, but Arkansas at No. 6 Florida is a go for now – although the Hogs will not have their head coach after he tested positive for COVID-19.

How to Bet Arkansas at Florida NCAA Football Odds & TV Info

  • When: Saturday, 7 PM ET
  • Where: Ben Hill Griffin Stadium
  • TV: ESPN
  • Stream: ESPN app
  • Radio:com
  • Opening NCAAF Lines: Florida -17.5 (total 62.5)

Last Meeting

These schools were not supposed to play this season but the reworked schedule paired them. They last did in 2016 when Florida lost 31-10 at Arkansas. The Hogs haven’t visited Gainesville since 2013. Arkansas has never won there. The two schools have met in the SEC Championship Game twice with the Gators taking both contests in 1995 (34-3) and 2006 (38-28). Florida leads the all-time series 9-2.

Why Bet on Arkansas? | 2020 NCAAF Expert Analysis

The runaway leader for SEC Coach of the Year if not National Coach of the Year is Arkansas’ first-year Sam Pittman, but he will not be at this game after testing positive for COVID-19. Pittman, 58, had a PCR test from Sunday come back positive, according to the school. His follow-up PCR test from Monday morning also was positive. Defensive coordinator and former Missouri head coach Barry Odom will take over as the Razorbacks’ interim head coach.

That the Hogs are 3-3 is a shock as they were not expected to win a single game in the SEC this year – just like they didn’t in 2019 or 2018, either. They come off a 24-13 win over Tennessee last Saturday. Tennessee had a 13-0 leading heading into the second half, but Arkansas went on a 24-point run in the third quarter and the Vols never responded to it.

The Hogs outgained the Vols 413-292. Feleipe Franks (a transfer from Florida) threw for 215 yards and three touchdowns, seven different players hauled in at least one reception and the team picked up 198 yards on the ground.

Redshirt freshman defensive back Jalen Catalon earned SEC Defensive Player of the Week recognition for the first time in his career by making 12 tackles with an interception and a forced fumble in the win. The Razorbacks’ four SEC Defensive Player of the Week awards this year are the most in a single-season in school history. Catalon joined teammates Bumper Pool (Week 2), Joe Foucha (Week 2) and Grant Morgan (Week 4) as honorees. Despite playing one or two fewer games than most of the nation’s leaders, Arkansas’ 12 interceptions lead the nation.

Arkansas has won three of its first six SEC games for the first time since 2015 and three of its first six games overall since 2016. Franks has collected at least 200 passing yards in all six games this season and his 14 touchdown passes this year are the most by a Razorback QB since Austin Allen had 25 in 2016.

Sophomore WR Treylon Burks is 64 yards away from reaching 1,000 career receiving yards and has four touchdowns in the last three games. Against Tennessee, he was just five yards shy of recording his third consecutive 100+ yard receiving game.

Why Bet on Florida? | 2020 NCAAF Expert Analysis

The Gators (4-1) took control of the SEC East Division with a 44-28 domination of No. 5 Georgia last Saturday. Kyle Trask passed for a career-high 474 yards and four touchdowns, all coming in the first half, as the Florida offense flattened Georgia, which came in allowing only 300 yards per game, to the tune of 571 total yards for the Gators’ first win in the series since 2016.

Georgia led 14-0 early in the first quarter, but the rest of the half was all Gators, as UF outgained UGA 433 yards to just 44 in taking a 38-21 lead into the locker room.

The Gators now hold a one-game lead on the second-place Bulldogs, as well as the all-important head-to-head tiebreaker, with the rest of the other East Division careers teams at least two games back.

Trask is having monster season with 125 completions in 182 attempts (that’s 68.7 percent) for 1,815 yards, 22 touchdowns (with four in each of the last four games) and three interceptions. That TD total is one shy of the record-setting mark LSU’s Joe Burrow established through five games a season ago. Burrow went on to win the Heisman Trophy.

It’s not clear if UF will have star tight end Kyle Pitts for this one as he’s dealing with the effects of a concussion. Pitts was knocked out of the win over Georgia during the second quarter, as he was on the wrong end of a Lawrence Cine hit that left both players down on the turf. Pitts has been the best tight end in college football this season, as he is responsible for 24 receptions, 414 receiving yards and eight touchdowns.

UF’s 212 points are its highest total in any five-game stretch against SEC teams since 2008, when it totaled 241 in its last four league games and an SEC Championship Game victory over Alabama. The Gators’ 212 points are also their highest total through their first six games of a season since 2007, when they scored 214.

The Gators are coming off their 10th game of 500-plus total yards under Dan Mullen, six of which have come against SEC teams. In the 101 games spanning the 2010-17 seasons, UF had nine 500-yard outings, with five against SEC foes.

Game Trends

  • Razorbacks are 8-0 ATS in their last 8 games overall.
  • Razorbacks are 2-14 ATS in their last 16 games following a straight up win.
  • Gators are 9-3 ATS in their last 12 conference games.
  • Gators are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games as a home favorite.
  • Razorbacks are 2-5 ATS in their last 7 meetings.

Expert Prediction

Florida 37, Arkansas 23  
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